There were four suggestions, from seven of us, for possible routes from King’s Tree; straight up Cold Side and beyond, Linch Clough to Barrow Stones, Slippery Stones to Bull Stones and part of the December Birthday race route. In the absence of Andy, sharpening his fitness in the Lakes and Tom graduating to the Fast Warts for Jura training, the rest of us voted for Linch Clough on the basis that it avoids too much steep climbing and any long drags on hard tracks. Would the Cap’n and his deputy have approved? Would there be enough knarly Slow Warting terrain to slow our pace to walking? We would find out.

The start of Linch Clough. Photo thanks to MIchael

It didn’t take much for us to break into a walk, even on the long gradual climb up Linch Clough, we were, of course, just warming up our stiff limbs and rousing our hearts into athletic action (we hoped). It is a long climb especially if going to the bitter end of the clough where it peters out into heather. By this time, Jim O had decided to forsake the delights of heather bashing for his own line. He was later joined by Chris returning from his four weeks stay in Portugal where he enjoyed decorating and beach strolling, notably with no running.

On the Way to Round Hill. Thanks to Michael for the photo

Our ambition was to reach Round Hill, Barrow Stones and Grinah Stones but reality caught up with us so we decided to miss Grinah and only do the others. This of course would involve a bit of “there and back” which is possibly against the principles of Slow Warting but, at least, both Roger and I would be happy to enjoy the 180⁰ change of view. After slopping our way through the very wet peat (who said on the way there that the moor was drying out?) to the climb to Round Hill which certainly lives up to its name.  Moz was not enjoying himself too much so he also left our rapidly diminishing group, to return to the car. 

Michael (?) dancing on Barrow Stones.
Peter and Roger enjoying themselves on Barrow Stones

However, we disgraced ourselves at Barrow Stones. Yes, we got there but didn’t bother to check the source of the Derwent nor the (Labrador?) tea plant. Shame on us! Instead, Michael took plenty of photos and we then sprinted back to Round Hill and then down the disused drain of Black Dike, Having mistakenly turned off it prematurely, thinking we were at its end, Pete fortunately corrected me and so we slowly sprinted on to the sharp left turn in to Linch Clough for a steep knee trembling descent to King’s Tree.

Of course, we went to the YBI afterwards, it’s a good distance to anticipate our refreshment and reward, along the valley road. Once there, other DPFR members began joining us, Roger B, Bob M, Dave L and later, Dave M and Alison who had both been in conversation with Peter (Rowlee Farm). Peter asked about the Cap’n and suggested Andy would have been ”vexed” after the holiday (mis)- adventure. As always, discussions included medical ailments and treatments and Warts groups the latter prompting Michael to ask whether there was a Masonic Warts group. Who knows?

It had been a great outing in, unusually for a Wednesday evening, warm and clear weather. Thanks to all for making it so. 

Graham

Categories: Warts